By Thomas Yuho Kirchner, Ruth Fuller Sasaki
The Linji lu (Record of Linji) has been a vital textual content of chinese language and eastern Zen Buddhism for almost 1000 years. A compilation of sermons, statements, and acts attributed to the good chinese language Zen grasp Linji Yixuan (d. 866), it serves as either an authoritative assertion of Zen's easy perspective and a primary resource of fabric for Zen koan perform. students examine the textual content for its value in knowing either Zen suggestion and East Asian Mahayana doctrine, whereas Zen practitioners cherish it for its strange simplicity, directness, and skill to motivate. one of many earliest makes an attempt to translate this crucial paintings into English used to be through Sasaki Shigetsu (1882-1945), a pioneer Zen grasp within the U.S. and the founding father of the 1st Zen Institute of the USA. on the time of his dying, he entrusted the undertaking to his spouse, Ruth Fuller Sasaki, who in 1949 moved to Japan and there based a department of the 1st Zen Institute at Daitoku-ji. Mrs. Sasaki, decided to supply a definitive translation, assembled a group of proficient younger students, either jap and Western, who within the following years retranslated the textual content in response to glossy examine on Tang-dynasty colloquial chinese language. As they labored at the translation, they compiled thousands of distinctive notes explaining each technical time period, vernacular expression, and literary reference. one of many group, Yanagida Seizan (later Japan's preeminent Zen historian), produced a long creation that defined the emergence of chinese language Zen, provided a biography of Linji, and traced the textual improvement of the Linji lu. The unexpected dying of Mrs. Sasaki in 1967 introduced the approximately accomplished undertaking to a halt. An abbreviated model of the publication used to be released in 1975, yet neither this nor the other English translations that accordingly seemed comprise the kind of targeted ancient, linguistic, and doctrinal annotation that was once imperative to Mrs. Sasaki's plan. The fabrics assembled via Mrs. Sasaki and her crew are ultimately on hand within the current variation of the checklist of Linji. chinese language readings were replaced to Pinyin and the interpretation itself has been revised in keeping with next learn through Iriya Yoshitaka and Yanagida Seizan, the students who prompt Mrs. Sasaki. The notes, approximately 600 in all, are virtually totally in accordance with fundamental assets and hence hold their price regardless of the approximately 40 years on account that their instruction. they supply a wealthy context for Linji's teachings, delivering a wealth of knowledge on Tang colloquial expressions, Buddhist proposal, and Zen background, a lot of that's unavailable anyplace else in English. This revised version of the checklist of Linji is sure to be of serious price to Buddhist students, Zen practitioners, and readers drawn to Asian Buddhism.
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Extra info for The Record of Linji (Nanzan Library of Asian Religion and Culture)
My discourse on dharma is diﬀerent from that of every other man on earth. Supposing Mañjuśrī and Samantabhadra were to appear before me, manifesting their respective bodily forms for the purpose of questioning me about dharma. ,’ I would have discerned them through and through. And if a follower of the Way comes for an interview as I sit quietly here, I discern him through and through. Why is this so? ” 178 180 181 183 184 xii The master addressed the assembly, saying, “Followers of the Way, as to buddhadharma, no eﬀort is necessary.
Why is this so? ” 178 180 181 183 184 xii The master addressed the assembly, saying, “Followers of the Way, as to buddhadharma, no eﬀort is necessary. You have only to be ordinary, with 185 12 | t h e r e c o r d o f l i n j i 186 188 nothing to do—defecating, urinating, wearing clothes, eating food, and lying down when tired. Fools laugh at me, But the wise understand. A man of old said, Those who make work for themselves outside Are just a bunch of blockheads. “Just make yourself master of every situation, and wherever you stand is the true [place].
Or a teacher may take out a bunch of stuﬀ and play with it in front of a student. The latter, seeing through this, makes himself master in every case and doesn’t fall for the humbug. Now the teacher reveals half of his body, whereupon the student gives a shout. Again the teacher tries to rattle the student by using all sorts of expressions having to do with diﬀerentiation. ’ exclaims the student. ’ “There are teachers all around who can’t distinguish the false from the true. When students come asking about bodhi, nirvana, the trikāya, or the [objective] surroundings and the [subjective] mind, the blind old teachers immediately start explaining to them.